Some serials have a publication date in addition to a chronological designation. The publication date, when present, is most often found with the publishing information, either at the foot or verso of the title page or in the masthead. If there is no publication date, a copyright or release date may be used. Give the publication date in field 260 regardless of whether it is the same as the chronological designation (AACR2 12.4F1).

If there is no publication date given on the first/last issue, supply the probable date in brackets. While the chronological designation itself is not a publication date, it may serve as an indication of the probable date of publication. For instance, if a periodical is issued monthly and the first issue is dated July 1991, it is safe to supply 1991 as the date of publication. For an annual report covering the 1990 calendar year, however, 1991 would be a more probable publication date. The date is bracketed because it does not appear as the publication date.

If a date has been rejected as a chronological designation because it does not identify a specific issue, it may be used as the publication date when there is no explicit publication date given on the piece. Example:

Dates to be used as the publishing date: preferred order:

Publication date

Copyright date

Release date

Probable date (may be inferred from chronological designation)

See also:

10.4. Dates of Publication